Time to Acquire Africa Center is Now!

According to 2015 research, there were more than 1.7 million Africans in the United States, and the 2010 American Community Survey found out that the largest numbers of African immigrants are in California, New York, Texas, Maryland, and Virginia.

New Jersey has about 86,000 Africans, Maryland 120,000, Georgia 75,000 and Florida 60,000, according to 2018 revised figures. Amandla thinks Africans in the U.S. are not doing much to help themselves, due to a lack of leadership and focus exacerbated by divisions and dissensions.

For the past several decades, Africans in New Jersey and elsewhere have been consciously or otherwise throwing money to the wind.

Between March and November each year, more than $250,000 (conservatively speaking) is pumped into three non-African churches in northern New Jersey alone in hall rental for funerals, retirement parties, anniversaries, and other occasions.

The money goes to these churches that do not offer any religious services and support such as counseling in times of need and/or grief to the African community. But they have opened up their halls for rentals because they are less strict than the African churches, allowing drinking, libation etc. in their social halls whereas the African churches see these acts as ungodly.

These non-African churches not only give unto Caesar what is Caesar’s, but they understand the simple economics of raising funds through other non- religious means.

In New Jersey, West Africans, especially Ghanaians and Nigerians, constitute more than 90% of hall renters in a given year. African churches with halls big enough for rentals do not allow “ungodly” sociocultural acts such as drinking and/or libation near their premises.

And so up the creek and without a paddle, the African community has no choice but to “invest” in a venture that is not beneficial to its causes.

On the other side of the coin, for lack of enough revenue, African churches depend on tithes and other biblical obligations to raise funds while their halls became white elephants on weekend nights when most events are held.

With limited funds, some African churches are shadows of themselves, – financially speaking and members are made to bear the brunt of needed revenues to sustain the church and carry out the goodwill mission work of God.

Amandla thinks as a community, church et al., this is a retrogressive and non-productive act that African churches need to re-evaluate.

There are several vibrant and professional African communities in the United States. For example, in almost all U.S. metropolises, there are variations of Ghanaian umbrella councils.

In New York, it is the National Council of Ghanaian Associations (NCOGA); in New Jersey it is the United Ghanaian Council (UGC), and so on and so forth.

Such umbrella councils, either solo or in collaboration with other African non-profit organizations and/or professional bodies, must spearhead aggressive efforts to acquire real estate properties, not only for funerals, retirement, graduation, and other parties, but a center par excellence of learning where youth of Africa and other interested people and parties can visit to learn and study about Africa, culture and all.

An Africa Culture House or Center should consist of a library, drumming and dancing lessons, symposia and forums and visual arts, etc.
Amandla thinks this is one way to unite the community, showcase its culture, and instill African identity and personality in its youth.

Otherwise, not only will we exercise poor judgement in our social life, but we will eventually lose it all!

Posted by on Jun 12 2019. Filed under Editorial. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

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